Inspired by nature, in particular by the marine mussels adhesive proteins (MAPs) and by the tough brick-and-mortar nacre-like structure, novel multilayered films are prepared in the present work. Organic-inorganic multilayered films, with an architecture similar to nacre based on bioactive glass nanoparticles (BG), chitosan and hyaluronic acid modified with catechol groups, which are the main responsible for the outstanding adhesion in MAPs, are developed for the first time.
The biomimetic conjugate is prepared by carbodiimide chemistry and analyzed by ultraviolet-visible spectrophotometry. The build-up of the multilayered films is monitored with a quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring and their topography is characterized by atomic force microscopy. The mechanical properties reveal that the films containing catechol groups and BG present an enhanced adhesion. Moreover, the bioactivity of the films upon immersion in a simulated body fluid solution for 7 days is evaluated by scanning electron microscopy coupled with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction. It was found that the constructed films promote the formation of bone-like apatite in vitro. Such multifunctional mussel inspired LbL films, which combine enhanced adhesion and bioactivity, could be potentially used as coatings of a variety of implants for orthopedic applications.